The Office of Press Relations answers questions from Journalists about U.S. foreign policy.

Hours Of Operation

8:15 am – 7:00 pm Monday through Friday

During regular business hours, journalists may contact the Office of Press Relations on (202) 647-2492.

After regular business hours, journalists can reach a Press Duty Officer Monday through Friday until 11:00 pm and Saturday, Sunday and holidays from 8:00 am until 11:00 pm. The Press Duty Officer can be reached through the State Department Operations Center: (202) 647-1512; or by email

Date: 01/20/2009 Description: Blue envelope icon, used for email subscriptions. State Dept PhotoSubscribe To Receive Releases from the Office of Press Relations

The Office of Press Relations coordinates Press Briefings and Media Events.

Access to Media Events

Accredited journalists and technicians who do not hold a building pass are welcome to attend open press events and will need to present one of the following as identification:

  1. A U.S. Government-issued photo identification card (White House, Department of Defense, Foreign Press Center, Congress);
  2. A media-issued photo identification card; or
  3. A letter on the employing media organization's letterhead, accompanied by an official photo identification (driver's license or passport).

Between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m., journalist wishing to cover an event should enter through the 23rd Street entrance, between D and C Streets NW.

A uniformed Protective Service Officer will issue a visitor's badge, valid for that day, which permits unescorted access to the Press Office, the Press Briefing Room, the Correspondent's Room where some reporters have office space, and the mezzanine balcony. (Press are not allowed above 2nd floor.) If an event is to be held elsewhere in the building, all press will be escorted by Department employees. The badge must be turned in upon departure.

The 23rd Street lobby is the primary pick-up point for escort to events. Outside the 8 a.m.-4 p.m. hours, the pick-up point is typically the C Street lobby. Camera set-up times and pick-up times for writers will be posted in the Daily Public Schedule online.

The Office of Press Relations will recommend that Diplomatic Security issue a long-term building pass to journalists and media technicians who demonstrate a frequent (three times per week) need to be in the State Department. Application forms are available from the Press Office, Room 2109, Harry S. Truman Building, Department of State. Applicants must return completed forms to the Press Office in person, along with a letter from his/her employer and proof of citizenship. Reporters from non-U.S.-based media organizations must bring a letter from the embassy of the country in which the organization is based attesting to the bona fides of the media organization. Issuance of the pass is contingent upon a background check by the Department's Bureau of Diplomatic Security. A building pass does not permit escort authority.

Interview Requests for State Department Officials with the subject: REQUEST FOR INTERVIEW

Ground Rules for Interviewing State Department Officials

Ground rules must be agreed upon at the beginning of a conversation or an interview with State Department officials. The discussion should proceed only after you and the officials are clear on exactly how the information can be used or attributed.

On the Record
Information may be quoted directly and attributed to the official by name and title.

On Background
The official's remarks may be quoted directly or paraphrased and are attributed to a "State Department official" or "Administration official," as determined by the official.

On Deep Background
The source cannot be quoted or identified in any manner, not even as "an unnamed source." The information is usually couched in such phrases as "it is understood that" or "it has been learned." The information may be used to help present the story or to gain a better understanding of the subject, but the knowledge is that of the reporter, not the source. No information provided may be used in the story. The information is only for the reporter's background knowledge.

Off the Record
Nothing of what the journalist is told may be used in the story. The information is meant only for the education of the reporter.

[This is a mobile copy of Information for Journalists]

Short URL: